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France opens VW emissions scandal probe

Officials are investigating suspected “aggravated fraud” by VW following the diesel emissions scandal.

Car maker Volkswagen’s headquarters in Wolfsburg, central Germany. Picture: AFP.

PARIS - France has opened a formal investigation into suspected "aggravated fraud" by Volkswagen following revelations the German carmaker rigged vehicle diesel emissions tests, the Paris prosecutor's office said on Tuesday.

The prosecutor had already opened a preliminary inquiry in October, and French police had carried out searches at the German carmaker's offices in France, seizing computer material.

Volkswagen has said 946,092 vehicles in France were equipped with the EA 189 engines potentially affected by the emissions data manipulation carried out by the company worldwide.

The probe concerns vehicles sold in France, according to the prosecutor's office.

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